Chapter 25 : Dreams
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Lionel jumped and hissed as Rose came running in, looking absolutely terrified. She asked loudly, “WHAT’S WRONG?!” I was staring at the white silver ring with a medium sized sapphire diamond in the middle in horror.
Numbly, I showed her the box and her eyes widened considerably. “Oh. My. GOD! WHERE DID IT COME FROM?!” I absentmindedly pointed to the jacket on top of mine as Lionel jumped off the bed and ran away, grumbling.
She snatched the box from me to inspect it more closely. I sat on the bed and tried to remain calm as the baby started kicking me. I took a few deep breaths and then Rose grinned.
“It’s absolutely gorgeous!” she breathed. “This is so sweet!” she said, cosying up to me. “Aren’t you excited?”
I shook my head vehemently. “No! I don’t want to get married! Why the hell would I want to do that?!”
Rose blinked and sat back confusedly. “What’s wrong with getting married?”
I so desperately wanted to stand up and pace but my feet were sore and I couldn’t pace properly anyway, I always ended up looking like a penguin walking.
“Because marriage just makes everything worse! It’s scary and wrong and—” I broke off, noticing my voice had become high-pitched and breathy.
Rose frowned. “Reese, calm down. There’s nothing wrong with marriage—” she started but I interrupted her.
“Yes there is!” I cried out. “It’ll be fine in the beginning but then we’ll fight and say horrible things to each other and then our kids will hide and listen to us and cry and think it’s their fault and then we’ll be okay and then the kids will be confused and then they’ll hate us and it’s just a horrible idea! We haven’t even been dating for that long! It’s way too fast! There’s enough pressure of the whole ‘I’m having his child thing’, this is unnecessary and scary and WHY WOULD HE DO THIS?!”
Rose put her arms around me, giving me a sad smile. “Reese, marriage isn’t a bad thing!”
I stared at her incredulously. “Look, James and I already are moving at a freaking fast speed for relationships, right?! Marriage is WAY. TOO. FAST. FOR. ME! I can’t do it! I – I just—”
“Shh, calm down, Reese! It’s going to be okay,” Rose said, trying to calm me down. “Take a few deep breaths,” she instructed, looking at me seriously.
I did as she instructed and then she asked quietly, “Better?”
I nodded and said, “Thanks, Rose.”
She smiled and placed the box on the bedside table. “Now, how about we forget about it for a few seconds, and go out to eat? You know, just to clear our minds or something?” I nodded absentmindedly and she gave me my coat. “Here, chuck this on. We’ll get going, yeah?”
I put the coat on and felt the baby kick me sharply. I placed a hand on my stomach and followed Rose out the door but only one thought kept running through my head;
I can’t believe he bought an engagement ring.
All throughout our afternoon tea, I wasn’t very attentive. Rose chatted amicably and I responded, but I just wasn’t taking much in. I cautiously nibbled on a muffin and listened to her, letting her talk about everything and anything.
She then ordered another tea, I mean – I had given her one at my place, did she really need a second one?
“Do you really need another tea?” I asked in amusement.
She scoffed, “Of course, I do. There’s never a limit to how many teas per day one consumes.”
I shrugged and she returned to her story. I listened with a bit more attention as I let the thought of the damn ring go.
I just hope it was some weird occurrence and that it wasn’t—
I dropped my spoon and gasped, my hands going straight to my mouth. “Reese, what’s wrong?” Rose asked, looking confused and concerned at the same time.
“The ring isn’t James’,” I whispered.
She frowned. “What do you mean? Who else’s would it be?”
I started getting excited. I grinned. “It isn’t his! It isn’t his! It can’t be – OH MY GOD!”
The rest of the café stared at me but I didn’t give a damn.
THE RING WASN’T JAMES’!
IT WAS SCORPIUS’!
It was in his jacket! How could I have forgotten?!
I beamed and resisted the urge to get up on the table and dance. (Not that I would be able to, being the size of a whale and all.) Rose snapped, “Reese, what the hell are you grinning about?! Tell me!”
I faltered. “I – I just know the ring isn’t for me,” I said nervously. I doubted Scorpius would appreciate me ruining the secret for Rose.
She looked so confused. “What do you mean? Whose ring would it be then? I’m so confused right now.” I bit my lip.
“Erm, can I explain a bit later? I just have to use the bathroom,” I lied, wanting to call Scorpius as soon as I could.
She stared at me suspiciously and then nodded. “Fine! But I want you to explain after!” I nodded and rushed as fast as I could (which wasn’t very fast) to call Scorpius.
I quickly dialled his number and felt the phone tremble in my shaking hands. The dull ringing nearly sent me mad but then he finally picked up.
“Scorpius!” I nearly shrieked.
“Wha – Reese?” he asked, sounding very confused.
“Scorp, this has got to be really quick. Are you going to propose to Rose?!” I said eagerly, stumbling over my words.
I heard him choke. “W-what?!”
My heart dropped. Oh no. Oh no. Oh god. Please let this ring be Scorp’s. “I – erm – just found a ring at my place and I’m hoping it’s yours because James accidentally took your jacket and—”
“OH THANK GOD! I thought I lost it! Phew,” he said, obviously relieved.
My heart soared again. “So it is yours?!” I squeaked.
“Yeah, I was going to ask her a few days ago but then I couldn’t find it but I didn’t want to tell Hermione because that was Rose’s great-grandmother’s ring and I tried Accio-ing it and it didn’t come and oh my God, THANK YOU!”
I squealed. Someone came out of the stall and glared at me but I didn’t pay her any attention. “Look, Scorp. I have to go. I’m actually with Rose right now, and well she thinks the ring is mine from James and now I have to go make up a story okay bye.”
“Bye,” he said before I quickly hung up. I walked out the bathroom and Rose was sitting by herself, looking at me suspiciously.
As soon as I had sat down, she asked, “So are you going to explain what you mean by that not being James’ ring?!”
I swallowed nervously. “Erm, yeah. Okay. I just wanted to call him and—”
“You called James?!” Rose asked, seeming to be very jumpy.
I shook my head. “No, see James accidentally took one of his teammate’s jackets instead of his own. I just wanted to make sure it was his. And it is.”
“Oh.” She relaxed but then asked me confusedly, “Why do you have James’ teammates on your phone?”
“Uh – um, I – I – oh! They recommend all partners of the players to get the teammates numbers in case something happens,” I lied badly. Rose raised an eyebrow at me. I drank some water to avoid her implied question. Then before she could actually say anything, my phone started ringing. I sighed and pulled it out, seeing the name James on my screen.
“Hold on, it’s James,” I said, frowning. Rose gestured for me to take it. “James?”
“Hey, Reese,” he replied. He sounded really strange.
“James, is there anything wrong?” I asked, starting to get worried.
I heard him swallow. “Could you come home, I need to talk to you,” he said, sounding strangled.
“Um, yeah. Okay. I’ll be there in like ten minutes. See you soon.”
“See you,” he replied distantly before clicking off.
I frowned. “I’m just gonna go home. I think something’s happened.”
Rose nodded and I quickly put a few pounds down. “I’ll see you soon, yeah. Sorry for bailing.”
She waved me off and let me go. I tried getting there as fast as I could and when I finally got there, I opened the door to see James sitting on the couch, staring at a blank wall.
“James?” I announced my presence. He stood up and turned around and I saw how freaked out he was. “James, what’s wrong?”
He was breathing rapidly. “Reese, look I think we’re moving way too fast and—”
“Hold up, what’s going on?!” I asked him.
His jaw twitched. “Our relationship is moving really fast and I don’t know if I want to keep going on like this, I mean, I’m turning twenty tomorrow—”
“Are you breaking up with me?!” I said loudly.
He flinched. “I don’t know if this is worki—”
“WHAT THE FUCK?!” I shrieked. “What the fuck, James?! How did this come about?!” I glared at him furiously.
He pointed to something on the coffee table. I glared viciously at him before storming over to see what it was. “Look, I can’t believe you’d do this Reese, it’s way too crazy and I know I said I could deal with all your depression and stuff but this is too much! I can’t handle this,” he said, starting to get angry.
“Shut the fuck up and let me see what it is,” I snapped. I looked at the velvet box and immediately my anger washed out and I started to laugh.
“Reese, this isn’t a fucking laughing matter! It’s fucking crazy, we haven’t even been dating for a year and you’re already living with me and having my baby and fuck! STOP LAUGHING!”
I clapped a hand to my mouth to stifle my giggles. “James, that isn’t mine. I had basically the exact same thoughts you had when I first saw it.”
Immediately his scowl dropped. “What?”
“It’s Scorp’s. Remember how you accidentally grabbed his jacket instead of yours?” I said calmly. It was odd, less than three hours ago I was the one panicking and Rose was calming me down. Now James was panicking and I was the calm one.
He still looked confused so I sat him down and explained the whole fiasco to him. When I had finished, he leant back and covered his face with his hands.
“I feel like such an idiot!” he moaned.
I patted his shoulder consolingly. “Me too, James, me too.”
“You probably think I’m the world’s greatest dick now, right?”
I shrugged. “No not really. Because I was thinking the exact same thing. I was thinking, ‘Holy-shit-I’m-dating-a-psycho-oh-my-God-I’m-not-going-to-survive-because-he’s-going-to-kill-me-if-I-say-no,’ so yeah. I’m not that mad.”
He grinned at me and my phone started to ring. I sighed and grabbed it, asking, “Hello?”
“Reese! It’s Scorpius. Can I come and get the ring now? It’s just that we’re going to go out to dinner again and—”
“YES!” I squealed. “Yeah, come right now. I’m home!” I was positively beaming at the moment. He quickly thanked me and hung up. I turned to James excitedly. “He’s going to propose tonight!”
“Really? They’re a bit young, don’t you think?” he said lightly.
I rolled my eyes. “Just because you don’t get along that great with Scorp, doesn’t mean they’re wrong for each other. Drop the overprotective role before I hit you over the head with a pan.”
“Thanks,” he said dryly.
I shrugged. “Don’t be a wanker then. They’ve been together for more than three years. They were friends since first year. They’ve fought before and they’re living together, they’re basically married anyway. It’s just making it official.”
He shrugged. “I guess…”
I didn’t know how to reply but I was saved by the door knocking. I picked up the ring and bounded (well, not literally) to the door. Except when I opened the door with a loud, “SCORPIUS!”, but it wasn’t him.
It was Rose.
I blinked and immediately tried to hide the ring. “No, just Rose. Why’d you say Scorpius?”
I swallowed nervously and then James said loudly, “I accidentally took his jacket. He was going to come and pick it up.”
I shot James a relieved smile. He winked at me and then Rose asked, “Okay… So is everything okay?”
“Yes, everything is dandy, Rose!” I grinned at her and James snorted. He came up behind me and discretely took the ring away from my hands.
She raised an eyebrow. “So what was wrong?”
“Well you see,” I started, trying to stall for time.
She waited patiently and I couldn’t think of one excuse on the spot. I opened my mouth a few times before I heard a loud, “Rose?!”
I jumped and saw Scorpius behind her. Rose whipped around and brightened. “Scorp!”
He grinned at her. “What are you doing here?” When she looked back at me, he widened his eyes and shot me a ‘WHAT THE HELL?!’ face. When she turned back to him though, his face smoothed back out into a smile.
“I was just making everything was okay. Reese left really fast when we were having tea so I just wanted to make sure all was well.”
He nodded and then James came up next to me. “Hey, Malfoy. Here’s your jacket.” He handed him the jacket and Scorpius immediately grabbed the pocket and smiled gratefully.
“Thanks,” he said, looking absolutely thrilled.
I had to resist the urge to squeal and grin but then Rose frowned at the jacket. “Isn’t that your jacket, James?”
He shook his head. “Nah, I have a really similar one. Also, I need that back,” he tacked on as an afterthought.
“But… the ring… didn’t it fall out of that—” She gasped dramatically and I looked at James in terror. Scorpius immediately went white and her mouth dropped open.
“We should get going,” Scorpius stated nervously. He made to move but Rose gripped his arm tightly, holding onto him.
“SCORPIUS, IS THAT YOURS?!” she shrieked. Our neighbour, who we never talked to, popped her head out of her door and glared at us. James sent her an apologetic wave and she grumbled and slammed her door.
I didn’t know what to do, so I just started to walk slowly backwards. Scorp was struggling to say anything and then he looked at me desperately.
“Don’t look at me!” I cried out.
Rose whipped towards me. “You knew?!”
“I worked it out at the coffee shop! I – I don’t—”
“Wait, Rose, let’s just go, I’ll explain everything at dinner,” Scorpius interrupted, looking at me nervously. I gave him a wink and he grabbed her arm and Apparated away.
I looked at James. “I’m just gonna get changed.” He nodded and I walked to the bedroom to get in my pyjamas.
When I’d gotten into my pyjamas I saw James looking at me (not like that, you pervert) oddly. He was leaning against the doorframe with his arms folded. “Say it was me who was going to propose what would you have said?” he asked. “But we were ready for it all and everything,” he added hurriedly.
“No,” I said honestly, “For three reasons. One: because we’re young. Two: we’re already moving extremely fast for a relationship, I don’t want to think about marriage at all; and three: I just don’t believe in marriage.”
He looked at me incredulously. “You don’t believe in marriage?”
I shook my head. “Why does everything have to be sealed off officially? Why can’t people just remain in relationships without a slip of paper with all this other legal crap?”
He frowned. “But isn’t that what every girl dreams of? Having a husband and a ridiculously large wedding?”
I rolled my eyes and sat on the bed as he scrutinised me. “Basically my one dream was for my parents to like me. When that didn’t work out, I didn’t really have any other dreams.” He looked so confused and I asked, “Why are you asking me this stuff?”
He shrugged moodily. “I dunno, it seems like you don’t want this to go anywhere then?”
“That’s not what I’m saying at all!” I said exasperatedly. “What I was saying is that I don’t think people getting married secures their futures and stuff. People have de facto relationships all the time. What’s wrong with that?”
He nodded and I asked curiously, “Did you ever want to get married?”
He shrugged. “I dunno. Like, if we talked about having kids or something I always said ‘my future wife this’, or ‘my future wife that’, so I never really thought about it but I did think one day in the very distant future I’d be married, I guess.”
I didn’t know how to respond to that but then he said, “But I get where you’re coming from. Marriage isn’t that important, is it?” I shook my head. “But can I ask you a personal question, then?”
I looked at him. “Yeah, alright.”
“Why do you hate the idea of marriage so much?” he asked. He pushed himself off the doorway and sat down next to me on the bed.
I made a face. “My parents used to fight all the time. I thought all parents were like that but then I overheard my dad talking to his mate – or my uncle, I can’t remember – and they were saying to leave my mum because she’s so crazy and demanding. I didn’t realise not everyone had screaming matches in their houses every night.”
“You know not every marriage is like that, Reese,” he said softly.
“But James, we’re eighteen and twenty, the odds are against us,” I said sadly. “If we told someone we were getting married they’d probably think that we wouldn’t last and they’re probab—” I stopped myself from saying any more to reduce the damage I’d already caused.
“You don’t think we’re going to last?” James asked, trying to keep the tone of his voice even.
I faltered. “No, that’s not what I was going to say…” I said slowly. “It’s just that – I mean, what couple lasts when they start dating at eighteen? I know we might be different but still – the odds really aren’t in our favour.”
“Do you have some commitment phobia or something?” he asked bewilderedly.
I snorted. “Probably. I do have ‘daddy issues’ though, so maybe that’s why.” I rolled my eyes when I said that. It was the most ridiculous thing I’d ever heard but it sadly was true.
James moved his jaw around for a bit and then finally said something, “Reese, you can’t just believe that. In the Wizarding world, it’s so common for people to get married to their boyfriend or girlfriend they had when they were at Hogwarts. I know it isn’t that common in the Muggle world, but I guess we’re just archaic.” I laughed and he wrapped his arm around me. “And even if we don’t last, it doesn’t mean this time we have together has to be bad, right? I think if we keep going like we are, we’ll be fine.”
I shrugged and gave him a kiss. “Yeah, I think we will be too.”
I woke up, and careful not to wake James up, I slowly slid out the bed. I looked at him worriedly but he was still fast asleep.
I had no idea how he wasn’t cold, he was only wearing boxers for crying out loud! I was in flannels, a singlet underneath my top and a jumper over everything.
With fluffy pink socks tucked into the bottoms of course.
I quickly called Ginny from the kitchen, hoping she was awake and I wouldn’t wake up James.
Luckily she answered on the first ring. I asked her about the following events of the day and she quickly filled me in on what they’d planned. I thanked her and hung up, just as James walked out from the bedroom.
“Happy birthday, sleepy-head,” I said, grinning at him.
“Thanks,” he replied, giving me a kiss. “Do I get an early morning present?”
I swatted him with a tea towel. “You get breakfast made from me!” I said instead.
He paled. “Um, I’m not really that hungry,” he said as his stomach rumbled.
I snorted. “No, I’ve been practising thank you very much. I’m going to give you a breakfast and it’s going to be damn good.”
He shrugged and sat down. “Alright then, I’ll just watch.”
I started preparing and talked to him about what was happening. “Also, Lily said ‘happy birthday old man’ in her last letter.”
“You’d think she’d write me a letter but no,” he said amusedly.
“Did you ever write her letters last year?” I asked, already knowing the answer.
He looked sheepish and I just grinned at him. I started making eggs, just for him because lately I really hadn’t felt like eating eggs. The mere thought of them made my stomach turn.
I cracked one egg and immediately my nose was filled with a foul smell. I gagged and clapped a hand to my mouth.
James was up immediately. “Reese, are you okay?” I nodded but then I gagged again. I didn’t bother responding but just ran to the bathroom.
He followed me and held my hair back, conjuring me a glass of water. “I’m sorry,” I croaked.
He rolled his eyes and said, “Don’t worry about it, Reese. Is everything okay?”
I made a face. I finished drinking the water and placed it down. “Yeah, just eggs haven’t really been on my good side for a few days now.” I gave him a quick smile and started brushing my teeth.
“I can do the rest if you want?” he offered.
I rinsed my mouth out. “I’m sorry, can you?” I felt awful. I couldn’t even cook a bloody breakfast (although, not because of my cooking abilities – more because the baby was a fussy eater/smeller).
He gave me a hug and kissed the top of my head. “Yeah, it’s fine. I actually enjoy cooking.” I smiled up at him and he took over the position of chef.
“Wait, so do you have a present for me?” James asked once I’d gotten changed.
I tried to hide a smile. “Yes, but you can’t get it yet – and no, it isn’t that type of present.” He looked put out and I rolled my eyes and said, “Not yet. We’ll go to the Burrow now. That’s where your actual present is.”
He brightened and I grinned at him. He was going to love this present. We arrived at the Burrow at twelve and mostly everyone was there. Mrs Weasley hugged James really tightly and peppered his faces with kisses I resisted the urge to laugh as James was bright red. Then Ginny got to hug him and she was even worse than Mrs Weasley.
But it was adorable.
Everyone wished him a happy birthday and then we sat down to eat. It was so sweet, they were all so loving and it was cute the way they all got together for someone’s birthday.
We all talked about nothing really, and then Rose and Scorpius walked in, both looking extremely happy. I looked at her eagerly and she gave me a big grin. When she hugged me, she whispered to James and me, “We’re keeping it quiet for now. We’ll tell everyone later.”
I nodded and said, “You have to tell me everything!”
She scoffed. “Of course. Oh hey, Roxy!” She walked off and I turned to James with a grin on my face. “I feel really special.”
He snorted but before he could say anything else, Harry said, “Do you want to get your present now? It’s one big one from everyone but there are other small things. But the main one is from everyone.”
He looked really confused but nodded. “Yeah, alright.” I struggled to contain my excitement and we led him outside into an empty paddock.
He looked even more confused and then Mr Weasley brought out a motorcycle. His jaw dropped and Harry said, “Ever since you were three you wanted a bike. This was my godfather’s, we’ve just fixed it up a bit and—”
“You got me a motorbike?” he asked excitedly. I beamed at him and Ginny nodded.
“Yes, we did. Happy birthday, sweetie!” She kissed him on the cheek and he looked like a little kid at Christmas.
Al clapped a hand on his shoulder. “Take it for a ride, then!” He didn’t need telling twice and hopped on immediately.
Al whispered to me, “That’s been his dream to have that bike. He used to always pester Mum and Dad to get a bike and they always said no.”
“It was a great idea, Al,” I said, grinning at him. “Thanks.”
He shrugged and ruffled my hair. “No worries.”
We turned back to watch James, as he took Dom for a ride. She also had a motorbike, but it couldn’t fly. She couldn’t have been more excited when we told her about the plan.
Louis poked me. “Are you ever going to get on that?”
I shrugged. “Sure, when I’m not pregnant.”
He nodded and I looked at James and Dom flying in the distance. Dom’s hair was flying everywhere and she was screaming – but not in a terrified way, she was so excited.
I smiled and sat down on a chair, it was going to be a long day.
Hope you all enjoyed! I struggled a bit with this chapter, but I'm hoping it's okay...
Also, props to potterfan310 and Januut for getting the ring thing right! I foresee two future seers in the near future. ;)
Thanks for reading, please review! :)
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